Thursday, September 25, 2014

Digger Dash Friday, October 3rd
We hope you are able to cheer on our students as they run during our Digger Dash!  Digger Dash is our annual fun run that raises money for our school.  We hope to purchase a climbing wall, musical instruments and art supplies with the funds raised.  Please see our "race times" below. 

9:20-9:35 Stretching (Preschool and Kindergarten)
9:35-9:50 Race Begins (Preschool and Kindergarten)
9:40-9:55 Stretching (1st and 2nd grades)
9:55-10:25 Race starts (1st and 2nd grades)
10:15-10:30 Stretching (3rd & 4th grades)
10:30-11:15 Race begins (3rd and 4th grades)
11:05-11:20 Stretching (5th grade)
                                                     11:20-12:05 Race starts (5th grade)

Focus of our Teacher Work Day
Teachers across grades K-5 collaborated on our two primary school goals on Friday, which are implementing the Lucy Calkins’ writing program and planning instructional units that naturally align multiple content areas. As you recall, Gold Rush adopted Lucy Calkins’ writing program last fall. It is exciting to see the benefits of this program already! Teachers in all grade levels noticed that students are writing more and the quality of their writing has increased because of our work last year! 

As is the case when a school adopts any new curriculum, implementation is a multiyear endeavor. We hope to build on our work from year to year by sharing our practices across grade levels. We believe additional discussions around instruction and assessment will strengthen our writing instruction even further.

Teachers also examined how they can strengthen instruction by making connections across content areas. Teachers discussed how thinking strategies that are often taught in reading (i.e. summarizing, analyzing, synthesizing and inferring) can also be taught in writing, math social studies and science. We believe that making these connections more explicit will further students’ use of these strategies and increase the rigor in all subject areas.

Dress the Part for Gold Rush's Own School Video
On Tuesday, September 30, the District will be filming a video that will highlight how Gold Rush is unique.  Help us show pride in our school by having your child wear either our school colors (red, gold and black) or a Gold Rush t-shirt.  We will post our video on our blog and website as soon as it is complete.

October 2 @ 5:00 -6:00  - School Advisory Committee (SAC) Meeting
October 3 - Digger Dash
November 4 - Correction on the District Calendar - School is in Session 

Parent Opportunity
Trying to work through the struggles of parenting? Wanting to make sure your kids are set up for success? As parents, we have an awesome task and can sometimes feel as though we are novices in an overwhelming mission. So, in order to help you feel encouraged and supported, Parent University is now enrolling parents in classes on the DCSD website!

Click here to check out some of the course offerings for this semester, which include bullying prevention, cybersafety, study skills, college prep, school finance and many others. Also, if you have suggestions for classes, you’ll find an area to submit your ideas for the following semester. We welcome your input and participation! These courses are designed to be a resource for parents, driven by parents!

Friday, September 19, 2014

Parent Teacher Conferences
We enjoyed meeting with several families this week during parent teacher conferences.  We enjoyed sharing your students’ accomplishments and strengths and planning on how we can work together to target his/her areas of need.  We look forward to meeting with the remainder of our families on Tuesday, September 23.

Math Olympiad
Math Olympiad targets 4th and 5th graders who love math and love to think their way through tricky problems.  This club meets every Tuesday morning from 8:15 - 9:00 starting October 7 and ending mid March.  Math Olympiad students compete against teams from all over the country.  Flyers with more information will be coming home in Thursday folders next week.  

·      September 23 - Parent Teacher Conferences
·      September 24 – Picture Retakes
·      September 26 – No School Teacher Work Day

·      October 3 – Digger Dash

Gold Rush Facebook Page
Check out our school face book page!  We are hoping to use this page as another avenue to communicate school events and celebrations.

Student Highlights 
I am happy to announce that the following students were elected as our Student Council officers for the year:

Our running club enjoyed marching in Legend High School’s homecoming parade this week!  This event was an opportunity for us to show our school spirit!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

State Assessment Results - Transitional Colorado Assessment Program (TCAP)
I am pleased to share that Gold Rush met state targets in the areas of student achievement and growth in reading, writing and math!  In the area of math, student growth exceeded expectations.  Student achievement refers to the number of students scoring either proficient or advanced.  Student growth, on the other hand, examines how well all students are making growth from one year to the next regardless of their level of achievement.

Students in grades four and five will receive their TCAP results from the state assessment early next week.  As you recall, all students in grades three through five took this assessment in the spring last year.  While students were assessed in reading, writing and math, students in grade four will only receive results in writing and math as reading scores were mailed previously.  Students in grade five will receive results for each content area.

TCAP is one of several pieces of data that teachers use to identify your child’s strengths and areas of growth.  Over the last two weeks teachers have been analyzing multiple data points, identifying each child’s individual goals and planning on how they will best meet his/her needs.  We look forward to sharing this information with you during parent teacher conferences.

Student Council
Gold Rush is excited to offer additional opportunities for student leadership this year in the form of student council.  Students in grades four and five ran for officer positions on Friday.  In short speeches, students conveyed their background, vision and reasons for their candidacy.  While the election results will be in next week, I am proud of all of the students for taking a risk and expressing a desire to serve our school!

Conference Sign Up
You can schedule your conference time through Canyon Creek starting September 8 through September 16. Click here for the link.  The password is Digger.

Upcoming Events
·      September 17 – Legend High School Homecoming Parade
·      September 18 @ 4:30-8:00 – Parent Teacher Conferences
·      September 23 @ 4:30-8:00 – Parent Teacher Conferences
·      September 26 – No School – Teacher Staff Development
·      October 3- Digger Dash

Safety Reminders
Parker Police officers routinely patrol the parking lot and our surrounding area during drop off and dismissal.  They have given several warnings reminding families to park only in identified parking spaces and turn right only out of the parking lot.  Please be mindful of these practices as police officers indicated they will issue tickets for these offenses in the future. 

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Digger Dash Kick Off
On Friday we kicked off the Digger Dash, or our annual school fun run, that will be held this year on Friday, October 3rd!  During a whole school assembly teachers ran, students cheered and the Assistant Principal and I got slimed!  Each year the Digger Dash raises money directly for our school.  Last year our families raised over $30,000 for laptops.  We are excited to support our specials (music, art and physical education team) this year as we raise money for drums, art supplies and even a climbing wall.  Please check your child's backpack for additional fundraising information.  We look forward to seeing you at the race track next month!

Promoting Psychological Safety
One of the goals of the District's three year Strategic Plan focuses exclusively on student safety.  Safety is defined as physical and psychological and it includes the online environment.  We have made several strides towards physical safety over the last two years.  Our efforts in this area include our work around restorative practices, daily visits from our police liaison officer, a locked entryway and the implementation of our Watch Dog Dads program.

Over the next week and a half we will focus on students' psychological safety by speaking with students at each grade level about feelings and emotions. Through books, role plays and videos we will examine different types of emotions, the concept of empathy and strategies for standing up for oneself and others.  This is one of many activities that we will do this year to create an even safer school community.

Parent Teacher Conference Sign Up
Fall Parent Teacher Conferences will be held on September 18 and September 23 from 4:15-8:15 PM.  Conferences are an opportunity for us to celebrate your child's strengths and identify ways that we work together toward specific goal areas.  You can schedule your conference time through Canyon Creek starting September 8 through September 16. Click here for the link.  The password is Digger.

Thank You!
* Legend High School students for reading with our students!

* Thank you Boy Scout Pack 81 for helping keep Gold Rush clean by picking up trash on and around school grounds!

Miner Diner
* You can find a copy of the opt out form for a la cart items on the school webpage.

* For the safety of our students we do not allow dogs on school grounds.